What Drives Political Disagreements


Russ Smith at Splice Today looks at the fringes on the right and left and reassures nervous pundits everywhere that reality is still at the center of things:

The "main show" in American politics hasn't changed: there's a true difference of opinion over the proper balance of power between the individual and government in almost every facet of life. Some fear incompetence, heavy-handedness and insensitivity by the government, at the expense of the individual; others are nervous about the private sector's power and influence and neglect of the underdog. It's an honest, timeless debate and is usually conducted in a semi-civilized, "let's agree to disagree" manner. The "sideshow," on the other hand, is part entertainment and part genuine lunacy.

Smith points to a bad column by the Wall Street Journal's resident liberal Thomas Frank and a piece by The New Republic's Leon Wieseltier for further reading.

Go here for more.


NEXT: The Real Reason Newspapers of The Future Are Losing Readers? Rap Songs by Future Journos!

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. part entertainment and part genuine lunacy

    Shut the fuck up, Lonewacko.

    1. Whoa, that’s original, Warty

      1. You’re not Lonewacko. YOU’RE NOT LONEWACKO!

      2. Who is Lonewacko? Is that the new Dondero? I keep losing track of who’s in and who’s out.

        1. Lonewacko predates Dondero, dude. His current nom de retard is 24aheadDotCom.

          1. “Lonewacko predates Dondero, dude.”

            He’s a vampire or something?

            1. No. What he means is that if Dondero is going out on a date at 8:00 pm, Lonewacko stops buy Dondero’s room for a little “pre-date” at about 7:45 pm.

              1. I see….. It’s the ol’ squirt squirt.

        2. I read this in Heidi Klum’s voice.

  2. “What Drives Political Disagreements?”

    Facsists stealing my Liberty.

  3. What drives political disagreements is the necessity for the politicians to create their facade of difference. Since they are pretty much the same on 90% of issues, the remaining 10% become huge hot-button slugfests where the two sides race to opposite ends of the ring to prove that they’re not two sides of the same coin. And their idiot bases believe them.

    The lunacy would be extremely entertaining if not for the fact that they are fucking us royally and there isn’t jack we can do about it. If we could just lock them all into a Big Brother house for good, it would be great for entertainment and lunacy–but even better for us.

    1. Poos oouzeen’ frum a gungrenuoos ‘eed, uh uh uh uh, reeght, uh, rutteen’ leembs lefft in lundffeells; zeese-a behe-a zee smells she-a dreemid ooff, uh uh uh uh uh, ineet, duh…uh…?Boot ‘eh fefureete-a und must funtesteec dreem behe-a zee bluumeen’ oone-a she-a ‘id ixpeheeessd dees efftehnuun: Zee hurseheed. Bork bork bork! Doihh, COOL! Cur ggleemey goof, uh uh uh uh uh, buoold I leee-a tu yuoo, duh…uh…? In ‘eh dreem, zee hurseheid is fresh, nefeh ruttee, uh uh uh, und zee bluud is steell behm, reeght, uh, su behm its irun oodur essoolts ‘eh nuse-a. She-a is lyeen’ oon ‘eh hemmeh und teck und tekes zee bluumeen’ heid by zee iehs, duuhhhh, drurs it cluse-a teh heh Nunny Guet Rece-a. She-a leecks zee hurseheed’s nustreels su zeey gleestee beef ‘eh seleefa und froosts ‘eh tungooe-a deep inseede-a iech oone-a, culleckeen’ nooggets ooff dreeid moocuoos teh sbelloo.

      1. Ezekiel, it’s even better with that French (?) accent. But you’re making me think of The Godfather.

  4. “there’s a true difference of opinion over the proper balance of power between the individual and government in almost every facet of life.”

    The fact that he conflates “private sector” with the “individual” suggests that he hasn’t been paying attention. Corporate power has become a concern for all skeptical of power structures, especially since corporations can be an extension of individual choice at the same time they are extensions of government policy.

  5. Reality is at the center of things, eh?

    Well, if reality is located somewhere between the two main political parties, then I’d prefer to live in fantasy.

    I’d alternatively suggest that mine is closer to reality than the crap coming out of either of the two parties. My town bears little comparison to anything they’re talking about.

  6. Overlapping paths to the same bad idea is not a moderate middle, but rather just the turd sandwich and giant douche blended together into a frapp

    1. That is the most original usage of frapp? I have seen in a long time.

  7. Yes, the two sides agree to disagree, except for that little thing where if you don’t comply with the demands of the statists as expressed by the state they can take your money, imprison you, or shoot you. All in a semi-civilized way, of course.

  8. I have to disagree that we agree on 90%, unless you are only talking about entrenched politicians, Epsiarch. I have fundamental disagreements with many, on policy. Where I find we agree is in goal. The problem is that too many believe that to achieve those goals, we need to empower the government to achieve them, while I believe we need to stop the government from screwing us over while we attempt to achieve those goals.

  9. aelhues, I am talking about the two parties, which is generally what people vote for, and also the politicians.

  10. then I agree

  11. Whatever deserved criticism Leon Wieseltier gets for his Obama lust, I still have a few cheers of respect his way for the piece he did in 1993 that was some of the juiciest, acid drench spittle lunged into the eye of the Washington establishment ever written. It’s title says it all, David Koresh, Authentic American Hero.

  12. It’s an honest, timeless debate and is usually conducted in a semi-civilized, “let’s agree to disagree” manner.

    I like that, conducting the debate in civility. Except, oh, there it is, while we were being pleasant the federal government just took irrevocable control over another segment of the private sector sans constitutional authority, and, yep, they used my money to do it.

  13. The other day my older sister almost had to remove my fingers from around my little sister’s neck. With me there is no agreeing to disagree when my kid’s future is at stake.

  14. Although you’ll never know who me is because something’s going on with the comments.

  15. Screw fuckers that think it’s ok to “agree to disagree” while shoving a gun in my face and demanding things.

    Fuck them.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.